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Dec 6, 2013 2:30pm PST
the energy from sunlight to convert carbon dioxide into carbohydrates -- into plant. and ecosystems on land are taking up a relatively large amount of the carbon that's emitted by human actions, essentially providing a subsidy. and what we'd like to know is, we into the future, will that carbon uptake -- that subsidy -- increase? will it decrease? will it go away and turn from subsidy into an trburden on the atmosphere? but we don't have very good models that address the full sets of things that occur in real ecosystems. and the jasper ridge experiment allows us the opportunity to get at that in a very precise way that lets us use it as a model system for understanding the controls on carbon balance in other ecosystems. narrator: the primary goal of this elaborate outdoor laboratory is to see how these future conditions will affect the ability of ecosystems to store carbon dioxide. as these plants grow, they pull carbon dioxide out the atmosphere and transform it into plant structure, or biomass. the more these plants grow, the more carbon dioxide they store. earlier experiments, done
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